What Went Down – Charlton
Although the Rams would surely have hoped and expected to score 3 points from Charlton Athletic at home, the general consensus after yesterday’s draw was that there was a lot to be encouraged by in the Rams display.
Here’s my thoughts.
- We will definitely play many teams this season a lot worse than Charlton. They were well organised, kept shape perfectly for 94 minutes and defended like lions. Their links with Standard Liege also mean that many of their players & pattern of play were of a better quality than you see from many Championship teams.
- That said, we absolutely battered them for long periods and whilst they had one massive break with their goal, we didn’t get one which was astonishing with the amount of crosses and shots we had into their packed defence. As the saying goes, Derby are going to hammer somebody sooner rather than later playing like this.
- Unlike many similar one sided games under McClaren, you really did fancy Derby to score yesterday every time we attacked. The Rams generally played with a lot more positive purpose and with a much better tempo, which made exciting viewing compared to several home fails under McClaren where we passed the ball around in pointless circles and wouldn’t have scored if we had played all night.
- Without the burden of the armband and not now being surrounded by morons, Keogh is like a man reborn. He was excellent yesterday and is it was great to hear the fans singing his name after all the shit he’s had since the play off final.
- Thorne again was majestic and he has to stay fit this season. There was another one of those horrible moments where he stretched for a tackle and stayed down. You could literally hear 30,000 people exhale with relief when he got up!
- The goal will do Chris Martin the world of good. I think he has struggled a bit to come to terms with the new shape and playing style (old tactic give it to Martin, new tactic give it to Ince) but he was starting to link up well yesterday and hopefully he will now push on.
- Although we are clearly desperate for another central midfielder, it’s been said everywhere, but well played Jamie Hanson. His mobility and combative nature gave us a much better balance in midfield, which we will certainly need against Boro. The new purposeful forward play also clearly suits him better than McClaren’s tiki taka.
- The South Stand looked amazing pre match and the new giant flags are tremendous. It seems not everyone got the memo (I guess not everyone is on twitter and assumed the flags were put there by the club) about leaving the flags behind but great job by the 1884 group. My only issue with the South stand generally is that we need more singing when the chips are down as opposed to, literally, singing when we are winning.
- Great shout by whoever decided to install contactless payment around Pride Park, once everyone realises and starts using it, revenue will soar guaranteed.
There is no reason at all why we can’t beat Boro on Tuesday and we certainly owe them one after they owned us twice last year. If we can do that and get something at Birmingham, it will have been a good solid start for Derby.
Come on you Rams!